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Alan Booth Secretary
Woodlea, Perth Road Dunblane
Chair Old Glassingall
Dunblane FK15 0JG
Minutes of the Dunblane Community Council held on Wednesday, 1 March, 2023, at 7 p.m. in the Library, Dunblane. This is a “blended” meeting, with some attendees joining by Zoom.
Present: Ailsa Gray (Chair), Alan Booth (Secretary), Stewart Corbett (Treasurer), Terence O’Byrne, Karen Jenkins, David Prescott, Anna Jarchow-MacDonald. Joining by Zoom: Sharon Mylchreest, Fiona Plumtree and Andy Mitchell.
In attendance: Councillor Alasdair Tollemache, David Hopper (Sustainable Development and Public Transport Manager, Stirling Council), Tom Horner (Team Leader, Sustainable Transport Development, Climate Change and Sustainability, Stirling Council), Paul Nelson (Dunblane Development Trust), Steve Mason, Bridget Clark, Jonathan Failes, Susan Lockwood, Clare Andrews (Green candidate in the upcoming Council election), Margaret Bragg (Minutes Secretary).
Apologies have been received from Graham Mowat, James Byrne, Annelise Bakri and Councillor Douglas Dodds.
- Chair's Remarks There are no conflicts of
- Approval of minutes of 1 February 2023
These were approved, proposed by Karen Jenkins and seconded by Terence O'Byrne.
- Road and cycle safety - David Hopper (Stirling Council)
B8033 cycle lanes Terence O'Byrne gave a brief overview of the chaos caused to traffic on 28 February when the north bound carriageway going through Dunblane was blocked off from Sunnyside up to Beech Road to allow the removal of the cycle lane paint and repainting with red paint (to indicate the carriageway is shared between vehicles and cycles). In doing this, cones blocked off Beech Road and were also placed outside the Riverside. Effectively no vehicles could access the High Street or the station and confusion arose over crossing solid white lines. After intervention by Terence O'Byrne and Councillor Tollemache, including contacting the Chief Executive of Stirling Council, the work was stopped and the contractors left the site at midday. Terence O'Byrne has received an assurance from Gary Neil (Roads Manager, Stirling Council) that any future work will be publicised to the community beforehand. David Hopper introduced himself to the meeting and, in response to a suggestion from Councillor Tollemache, agreed to arrange for an apology to be sent to all the affected traders. Action: David Hopper. Tom Horner and David Hopper both committed to working through a process, involving all their team leaders pulling together a whole scheme ownership plan, to ensure this situation does not arise again.
David Hopper gave a brief resumé of the Spaces for People project, a temporary, government-funded scheme to encourage walking and cycling during the pandemic, which had resulted in the cycle lanes on the B8033. The funding runs out at the end of this fiscal year, and so he was anxious that any future work to change the markings be agreed before then. The situation in Dunblane will change as, under the City Deal, an off-road cycle route has been approved between Dunblane and Bridge of Allan. Critical of the existing cycle lanes which were too close to parked cars, Bridget Clark supported retaining the 20 mph limit and concentrating on the new cycle route. David Prescott highlighted the anomaly of there being buffer zones on the B8033 between parked cars and cycle lanes while outside the Co-op, on National Cycle Route 765, there is no such buffer zone, although there is a more frequent turnover of parked cars. He wanted the Council to see the community council as a facilitator in bringing together residents to comment on proposals. He stressed that the council represents the whole community, including non-cyclists.
Terence O'Byrne pressed for the solid lines and red paint to be removed, while Councillor Tollemache fed back comments he had received on social media, supporting this view. To retain the 20 mph limit, David Hopper will need to consult with the Road Safety Officer.
David Hopper proposed that a group be set up to draw together agreed proposals to be submitted before the end of the fiscal year in a few weeks' time. Bridget Clark, Councillor Tollemache, Alan Booth and Terence O'Byrne agreed to participate in this. Action: Bridget Clark, Councillor Tollemache, Alan Booth and Terence O'Byrne. Paul Nelson suggested that the traders and members from the Town Centre Group of the DDT be invited to take part.
It was agreed that it be publicised on the Dunblane website and on social media that Council officers had attended this meeting to apologise and are working towards an agreed solution.
B8033 Kinbuck to Dunblane The Chair highlighted the dangerous stretch of 60 mph on this road. There are frequent traffic incidents, with the wall at a blind corner having been knocked down on to the carriageway recently. School children walk this dangerous route and have to walk on the road. She asked that the speed limit be reconsidered and reported that Carlyn Fraser (Operations Team Leader (Network),
Stirling Council) is already considering designating the road up to Kinbuck and Braco as a Quiet Road (cycle, pedestrian and horse-friendly). Councillor Tollemache has not had a response from the Council about repairing the wall and will pursue this again. Action: Councillor Tollemache. David Hopper agreed that this will be discussed by the proposed new group. Action: David Hopper.
A discussion arose over the plans to close the bridge at Kinbuck when the works for electrification of the railway line north of Dunblane starts, in order to increase the clearance underneath. David Hopper stated that the bridge could be closed for six months and there will have to be a temporary crossing. As was noted, when there is an accident causing the A9 to be closed, this is the main diversion route. David Prescott said that there should be discussions between the Council, Network Rail and the community on possible solutions, especially if the bridge is not going to be reinstated exactly as it is, for example with a wider carriageway. The Chair also commented that a great deal of erosion has taken place on the bank at the bridge.
Bridget Clark suggested that the pedestrian bridge over the railway in the Laighhills be graded to avoid steps, when the electrification work is carried out, and Tom Horner agreed to look at this. Action: Tom Horner.
Queen Victoria (QV) slip roads on to the A9 The Chair reported that recently there was a serious accident near the QV slips on the northbound carriageway of the A9 and she stressed how dangerous this stretch of the road is. She suggested that representation be made to Transport Scotland, stressing that any new developments would put even more pressure on the slip roads which are not compliant with the Design Manual for Roads and Bridges (DMRB). David Prescott reported that this section of the A9 has most breaks in the central reservation with drivers not expecting farm traffic and multiple junctions. There are problems with carriageway maintenance and potholes. It was agreed that the Chair will draft a submission to Transport Scotland. Action: The Chair. The Chair referred back to the judicial review held over the application for the development at Firs of Kinbuck and the scathing criticism directed at Transport Scotland, which had made no objection.
Councillor Tollemache reported that the Council is going to tidy up the road from Marks and Spencer to the Keir roundabout once the works there are complete.
- Matters arising
Youth behaviour The Chair reported that she is attending a meeting with Councillor Tollemache and Rev Ruth Kennedy from the Cathedral on 8 March to discuss this.
5G masts The Chair has circulated a statement from insurers who do not cover harm from the masts. David Prescott commented on another mast being rejected by the Council, as reported in the Stirling Observer.
Sewage leak at Argyle Way Terence O'Byrne reported that Scottish Water has investigated and there is a meeting arranged for 21 March. He and Councillor Tollemache are committed to pursuing this.
Windfarm The Chair reported that the contract with the Braes of Doune windfarm is due for renegotiation. The Secretary notified the meeting that another windfarm is proposed in the Ochil hills which will be visible from Dunblane.
Dandara housing proposals Bridget Clark has circulated her comments on the presentation by Dandara and will submit them to the Council.
- Planning Report: See
With reference to the demolition of unused buildings at the Queen Victoria school, the Secretary commented that the bat survey was not done at the right time of year.
With reference to the application at 1 Atholl Place (see minutes February 2023), the garage has been allowed as a permitted development but the owner will have to apply for a Road Opening Permit to access Keir Street. Regardless of safety concerns, Councillor Tollemache thought that this might well be allowed. However, Terence O'Byrne was of the opinion that the garage is in contravention of regulations as being too close to the road.
With reference to the application for housing at Kellie Wynd, this was refused by the Planning Panel. It was noted that the applicant, Kippendavie Group Trust, has several months to appeal, and has contacted Councillor Tollemache for a meeting. David Prescott also warned that as this is a Planning in Principle application, there could be changes made to it and the community council should work more with developers. The Chair also commented that the proposed housing would increase traffic on the QV slips.
- Treasurer's Report: See
The Treasurer asked community councillors to submit expenses claims as soon as possible.
- Police Report: See
With reference to the traffic incident on Perth Road resulting in damage to a large road sign and a wall, Terence O'Byrne agreed to send a photo and details to Councillor Tollemache. Action: Terence O'Byrne.
Councillor Tollemache remarked that another incident of antisocial behaviour at Mill Row had been dealt with quickly by the police.
- Standing Items
Local Place Plan Stewart Corbett reported that progress is being made and an Open Day has been organised on 15 April in the Braeport with displays and information about which people can comment. The Chair suggested other venues to publicise the LPP such as the Dunblane Centre and said she would raise this at the meeting with Rev Ruth Kennedy on 8 March. It is hoped that the Big Dunblane Survey will be complete by the end of June and will be analysed throughout the summer and a report will be drawn up.
Cathedral Burial Ground Andy Mitchell said there was nothing new to report. An email from Historic Environment Scotland reviewing the repairs and the recording of inscriptions suggested working with other local groups such as the Museum and the Leighton Library. The Chair agreed to circulate this. Action: The Chair.
Road and footway gritting Terence O'Byrne reported that he had a walk-about on 24 February with the Roads Officer who has committed to clear out the gullies between the QV school and the Keir roundabout within the next few weeks. Terence O'Byrne also pointed out problems with potholes and flooding. With reference to the blocked culvert on the Kinbuck road, it is hoped to jet-clean it within the next few weeks, and to clear the gullies on the B8033. Terence O'Byrne will pursue this.
Reports from external meetings
Dunblane Development Trust Paul Nelson reported that a Board meeting is to be held next week. The Town Centre Group has launched its consultation, with nine key action points. He agreed with Sharon Mylchreest that it would be useful to get the owners of empty premises involved as well, while the Chair commented that there is Government support to address the problem of empty buildings. It was noted that Mary's Meals in the High Street will close in September.
Burgh Chambers Steve Mason has circulated an update. With reference to defibrillators, he stressed the importance of the relationship with the Trossachs Search and Rescue which assists in their maintenance. He suggested that they come to a community council meeting later this year. It was noted that Newton is looking for funding to retain its defibrillator and the machine at St Mary’s is looked after by the church, not the school.
- Report from Ward Councillor
Councillor Tollemache led a discussion on the future of the pavilion in the Laighhills. The relations between the Soccer Club and the Cricket Club are good and they agree they have no interest in retaining the building. Councillor Tollemache has spoken with Drew Leslie (Head of Infrastructure, Stirling Council) about the possibility of demolishing the pavilion, provided that it is replaced with a usable toilet facility. However, it is essential that the community is consulted and this could be part of the Open Day consultation on the LPP on 15 April.
The success of the Soccer Club, who work with over 500 children, was noted. Its main priority is to have another artificial turf pitch. The Cricket Club would like a small pavilion on the upper pitch.
- Correspondence Report: See
The Secretary has received a complaint about the state of the vennel between George Street and Springfield Terrace, which is being dealt with by Councillor Tollemache. Annelise Bakri is pushing for a road crossing at Springfield Terrace.
A discussion arose over the proposal by the children of St Mary’s Primary and the Parent Council to raise funds to refurbish Millrow playpark. Anna Jarchow- MacDonald is going to meet with a representative from St Mary’s and reported that they wanted to add accessible play equipment. However, it was noted that this is a Council playpark which, therefore, has a responsibility to make sure it is up to
standard and maintained. Councillor Tollemache asked Anna Jarchow-MacDonald to discuss this with him. Action: Anna Jarchow-MacDonald.
Paul Nelson reported that the footpath at Kilbryde Crescent, having been repaired, has cracked again. Councillor Tollemache agreed to look into this. Action: Councillor Tollemache.
- Date, time and place of next
The next meeting of the Dunblane Community Council will be held on Wednesday, 5 April, 2023 in the Library, at 7 p.m.
The meeting ended at 8.55 p.m.
This is a true representation of the meeting.